|[Note Guidelines] Photographer's Note|
Inhabiting rainforests, adults are commonly found among sparser secondary growth and along forest margins. They feed on the nectar of Hamelia, Lantana, Palicourea, and Psiguria plants. They reproduce continuously, with several generations produced every year. Sara Longwings are one of several heliconiids exhibiting the unusual practice of pupal mating, in which adult males are attracted to female pupae via the latter's pheromones. The males compete for prime perch space close to the females' chrysalids, and successful suitors forcibly mate with the females immediately following their emergence. Alternatively, males may also patrol a territory in which they search for females that have already emerged. The adult stage has a lifespan of 2–3 months.
Like other heliconiids, females seek the new growth of passion flower vines on which to lay their small yellow eggs, in clusters of 10–50. The vines contain toxic compounds which the caterpillars are immune to; as they feed upon the vines, the caterpillars concentrate the toxins within their tissues. After pupating (with the chrysalis also found on the host vine and camouflaged like a leaf), the adult retains the toxins and is thus protected from predation.
This photo was taken at the Butterfly Garden in Victoria.
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A beautiful butterfly and an excellent photograph. regards yiannis
- [2011-06-24 1:23]
Hi Manyee.This is a great gift to all the butterflies fans of TN! What a magificnet heliconius and what a beautiful capture,these is a magic light inside this pic and a very impressive quality of sharpness and colors,i like it...a lot!Thanks for share,have a nice weekend,Luciano
Great shot with beautiful natural colours and excellent light. Great work.Thanks for share,have a nice day,Vijeesh